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China’s plate export prices fall further in weak market

Keywords: Tags  China plate, plate exports, Chinese exports, plate prices, Taiyuan Steel

SHANGHAI — China’s plate export market lost further ground this past week as buyers remained scarce and more mills reduced their list prices.

Transactions for commercial-grade, boron-containing plate were at $520 to $525 per tonne f.o.b. for July shipment May 22, down $5 per tonne from AMM sister publication Steel First’s price assessment of $525 to $530 per tonne f.o.b. May 17.

Base export offers for the product also dropped by $10 per tonne to $530 to $540 per tonne f.o.b. for the same shipment period.

"The further decrease in list prices allowed steelmakers to set lower export prices," a trader in Shanghai said.

Three plate producers, including Taiyuan Iron and Steel (Group) Co., reduced their list price for the product by 50 to 70 yuan ($8 to $11) per tonne May 21.

Business is still slow, with many mills struggling to close deals.

"It is not easy to conclude business despite lower prices," an export manager for a steelmaker in northern China said. However, room for further price drops will be limited as producers are unwilling to sell at a loss, he said.

Instead, most plate producers have been cutting output in an attempt to shore up the market.

Domestic plate prices in China fell further this week, deflating sentiment.

In Shanghai, 14- to 20-mm plate was trading at 3,610 to 3,620 yuan ($583 to $585) per tonne May 22, down 10 to 20 yuan ($2 to $3) from Steel First’s previous assessment and 40 to 60 yuan ($6 to $10) per tonne lower than a week earlier.

A version of this article was first published by AMM sister publication Steel First.

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